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Community leaders share the importance of educating yourself on rip currents

Foundation design to raise education and awareness about rip currents
Posted at 6:42 PM, May 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-26 19:42:45-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Educating yourself and your loved ones is a crucial step before you decide to enter any South Texas beach waters.

Meteorologist in Charge John Metz with the Corpus Christi National Weather Service says rip currents are a phenomenon that occurs on most beaches but knowing what to do can help save a life.

“It’s like a river it’s a very powerful channel of water and it can pull an inspected swimmer out to sea and that’s the danger,” said Metz.

Metz says rip currents are a strong current of water that moves out to the sea and into the breaking waves. A major takeaway to note is that a rip current is a very powerful channel of water.

“Rip currents are a threat unfortunately we see lives lost every year on our beaches because of them and just need to know how strong that water is,” said Metz.

“Please pay attention to the education because that’s what we’re really working on is educating the people about how dangerous those riptides are,” said Nueces County Commissioner Brent Chesney.

Chesney works closely with the Je’sani Smith Foundation and says there has been much progress in placing signage, working with the City of Corpus Christi, and even passing the Je’sani Smith Act or HB 3807 to the senate and bringing awareness to the community.

However, there’s still more work to be done.

“It could absolutely save a life if you are out there looking at the beach and telling people because we get a lot of people from out of town, and they don’t know the beaches, they don’t know the dangers of the beaches,” said Chesney.

Chesney says to make more of an impact, the foundation is open to community suggestions.

“Take those warnings seriously because it’s a tragedy when something like that happens,” said Chesney.

“A lot of folks are just unexpecting of the dangers that are lurking out on the beach and so education is key and the more we can share the information about rip currents, awareness safety the better off we will be,” said Metz

State Rep. Todd Hunter's office shares that the next step for the Je’sani Smith Act is for the House to concur and then it will head to the governor's desk.